Monday, November 8, 2010

Photographer Insurance

Hopefully my insurance agent won't read this.. =) Last spring I had a very close call that almost cost me big! I had recently bought my Nikkor 500mm f/4. When we got on the boat to photograph Tern's I joked about how all of my equipment was covered except my shinny new lens. My procrastination in updating my policy almost cost me big!

I'm always willing to push the limit to get the shot and I decided it would be best if I got off the boat and walked on a rocky point to get a nice low angle. I got off the boat in about four feet of water when I realized I was standing on very slippery boulders. The boat had backed off and I was on my own. In seemly slow motion, I started to fall. I toppled over in the water holding my 500mm f/4! Somehow through luck and concentration I was able to keep my lens above water!

Derek watched the whole thing from the boat. He said it started with fear then quickly changed to all out laughter. The worst part was that due to my antics the birds got spooked and flew off.

This is a topic that should be obvious but is often overlooked by many photographers. If your a pro and are making a living from photography, hopefully it's something that was at the top of your to do list. But many amateurs overlook it.

You might think it's expensive or a big hassle. But the truth is that in many cases you can add a personal articles policy to your homeowners insurance. I use State Farm Insurance and it was fast and easy to set up. The best news is that it is very affordable! You can typically cover thousands of dollars of gear for a couple hundred dollars per year. All types of photographers will benefit from this type of piece of mind. But for us wildlife photographers, I'd say it's a necessity!

In the end I was able to get a few shots from the boat, but it wouldn't have been worth it if I lost the lens due to my laziness on something so simple. If your a pro you likely need a policy for working photographers. I'd suggest joining one of the professional photographer associations such as PPA or NPPA and getting insurance though them. If you an amateur, call up your homeowners insurance agent and get it set up today, it's worth it!

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